Owen King talks about his new book
Owen King has a G.I. Joe action figure named after him; he lives in a renovated Catholic church in Brooklyn; he’s the son of Stephen King; and he’s releasing his first book of fiction, We’re All in This Together. Of all these very cool things, it is that third one that concerns him the most, for obvious reasons. ”I didn’t want to write a book as Stephen King’s son, because all I did was get born, and that’s not much of an accomplishment,” says the 28-year-old. ”If that was the reason my book was published, it wouldn’t be worth the paper it was printed on. I wanted to do my own thing.”
And he has. The 135-page title novella — which stars a teenage boy and his radical, former-union-leader grandfather — and the accompanying four short stories (one of which, ”Wonders,” was a National Magazine Award nominee) have been lauded by Publishers Weekly as a ”compelling, imaginative debut.” ”Hopefully, it’s like a really cool Wilco record,” King says of the book, ”where all the songs sound really, really different and you wonder what’s gonna come next.”
A graduate of Columbia University’s M.F.A. writing program (where he met his fiancée, author Kelly Braffet), King claims he’s ”not fit for any kind of work except for writing or manual labor.” He is currently working on a screenplay with brother Joe, 33, that’s already been optioned by Working Title Films (”I don’t want to say what it’s about yet”), and he plans to start a novel in the next year. What does the paterfamilias of the King family think of his son? ”There are two great things about this,” says EW’s back-page columnist. ”The first is that what Owen is doing doesn’t bear any resemblance to my writing. And the second thing is. . .thank God he’s good.” It seems even horrormeisters have their soft spots.